Transforming the energy efficiency of the clay brick sector in South Africa


Accelerating industrial energy efficiency

A major area of focus for the Carbon Trust is accelerating the improvement of industrial energy efficiency through promoting best practice and the adoption of innovative new technologies.

We were asked to apply this expertise by Swisscontact to support the Energy Efficient Clay Brick Project, a programme funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation to improve energy efficiency across approximately 100 industrial clay brick manufacturing plants in South Africa.

Best practice recommendations

We ran a series of workshops with industry and government stakeholders to understand the barriers and opportunities for energy efficiency in the sector. Following this we developed a tool that identifies areas of energy loss in continuous kilns, providing detailed information on potential interventions that companies can make, recommending best practices that can save energy and money.

Training sessions on the tool have been provided to members of the Clay Brick Association in South Africa, and a financing guide has also been developed with advice on how to secure investment to make improvements.

Following this engagement, we further worked with SwissContact to co-author a financing guide that provided additional information to brickmakers on how to finance the best practice interventions.


production costs of a brick accounted for by energy use



bricks are produced per year by the companies involved in Energy Efficient Clay Brick project



annual savings provided by improving the energy efficiency of a typical South Africa fixed kiln - which can deliver a 30% reduction in energy use


Read more on the Swisscontact website

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